I'm Jayne and I run one of the largest independent music showcase websites in Wales, and possibly the UK (Paradiddles Plectrums and Posers). It is approaching 300,000 visits and if you search 'unsigned guitar bands' on Google, PP&P comes out top of the results out of 2+m ... so not too shabby for an independently run website with no sponsors or adverts. I've also worked as a radio plugger/music promoter and had artists played on BBC Radio and national daytime UK television.
I am an advocate for childhood cancer awareness and have a website, Guitars 4 Good, in the name of which, apart from sharing children's stories and fundraising links, etc, I design personalised cushions for young children with cancer and bereaved mothers. I thought of doing cushions after seeing a photograph of two little sisters (both of whom had cancer) who had not seen each other for three weeks while one was in hospital. Cushions are something you can cuddle (or as we in Wales say ‘cwtch’) and so can be cuddled in the absence of the loved one whose photo is on the cushion. I call them ‘comfort cushions’ as they offer both the physical comfort a cushion gives as well as emotional comfort.
I love writing and one of my ambitions is to have a book published the old fashioned way ... via a publisher. I have the bones of a book written, a memoir of several years of my life which reads like the script of a soap opera!
I have always been creative, since a child, and as an adult enjoy doing charcoal portraits but, due to pain/finger numbness caused by my osteoarthritis, holding the charcoal sticks for any length of time has become more and more uncomfortable. I therefore taught myself how to create 3d figures which I then incorporate into designs using either digitally painted textured backgrounds or photographs I have taken in and around my locale – you cannot beat nature for providing the most wonderful colours and textures.
When digital art came into my life it meant that I could still be creative but without the physical discomfort, as the only physical tool I need to use is my computer mouse. Although of course the most significant tool needed is imagination and with fantasy figures your imagination can definitely run wild.
I have always also loved the supernatural with my absolute favourite tv programmes over time being Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Angel and Charmed. My love of the supernatural shows in my figures which feature fairies, mermaids, vampires. My other love, music (I learned to read and write music, and play the piano, at age 6), also plays a part and there are often guitars included in my work, and even a grand piano in some.
I’ve already had great reactions to my designs. I had some printed onto tote bags which, when I took them to lunch to show a friend, generated a lot of interest from other clientele at the eatery we were in, who interrupted us to ask about my art and whether I had a website, etc. So that was encouraging and pleasing.
My dream is to see my figures gracing quality bags (handbags, shoppers) and brighten someone's day every time they use a bag featuring one of my creations.
I absolutely love creating my figures, with their bold colours and sassy yet elegant poses, and get great joy from seeing the finished piece, and I hope that others will enjoy looking at my work too.
Some of my charcoal artwork.